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Old 09-07-2012, 08:18 AM   #1
ewd
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Week after Christmas

My two kids (ages 4 and 7) are dying to go to Cars Land, so we thought we would surprise them with a trip to DCA/DLR right after Christmas. We are Disney novices and although I thought it would be a busy time I didn't realize that it is literally the busiest week of the year. My question is-- if we go in with reasonable expectations and a good plan are we going to be able to manage? We would not be going with the mindset that we are going to ride every ride or do everything but I am really just worried about things like the park reaching capacity and not letting people in or out or not being able to move because there are so many people.
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Old 09-07-2012, 01:02 PM   #2
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We would not be going with the mindset that we are going to ride every ride or do everything but I am really just worried about things like the park reaching capacity and not letting people in or out or not being able to move because there are so many people.
The park will reach capacity, but with the exception of NYE, the gates will close, when enough people leave, they reopen. (They do the same NYE, except people don't leave...) So, the gates may close at 2pm, but after the parade lets out and people head out for naps, they reopen.
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Old 09-07-2012, 01:15 PM   #3
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Disney Novices, young kids - no way. Can't you go some other time?
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Old 09-07-2012, 01:19 PM   #4
Mary Jo
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It will be extremely crowded, and if this is the first time you're taking your kids to experience Disney, I would really wait for a time that is less crowded. You will spend the majority of the day waiting for things, unfortunately.

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Old 09-07-2012, 01:25 PM   #5
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We went 5 years ago the week between Christmas and New Years: Never again! Complete waste of money because of the crowds and this was even working a plan, etc. I wouldn't do it!
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Old 09-07-2012, 01:59 PM   #6
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If one of the main draws is Cars Land, do not go at that time. Some of those rides are already over an hour wait, and with the parks full they are bound to be longer. You would spend all your time in line and only get a few rides a day. I would definitely go at a slower time.

I am a firm believer in taking kids out of school for Disney. The parks are just less crowded. Have you thought of making the trip a present, but going in January or February? The crowd level is much more pleasant, and you will enjoy it much more.
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Old 09-07-2012, 02:02 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mary Jo
It will be extremely crowded, and if this is the first time you're taking your kids to experience Disney, I would really wait for a time that is less crowded. You will spend the majority of the day waiting for things, unfortunately.
Yeah. Hate to be a downer but I don't think you can really appreciate what you'll be up against just by reading things online. It won't be "busy"... It will be "what the heck was I thinking, I hope my family will someday forgive me for putting them through this" busy lol. If you were a seasoned vet that just wanted to go to soak up the Christmas decorations and maybe catch a few rides then fine, but I would hate for your family's first impression of the magical place that is Disneyland to be nose-to-back pushing down Main Street just trying to muscle through to the first ride.
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Old 09-07-2012, 02:29 PM   #8
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I would reschedule, too. the week between Christmas and NY is pure evil. Even lines that are normally walk ons have 40min waits. And the Eticket rides, forget it.

If your trying to schedule around kids' school, go the week before Christmas week or the week after NY. It'll still be busy (Index 84/100 with 100 being max capacity), but you'll be able to walk at a humans pace. If you could swing it, go the first week of December. It'll be full christmas swing, but a lot more managable.
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Old 09-07-2012, 02:39 PM   #9
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Try doing a Google image search of "Disneyland Christmas Crowds" and you'll see what we mean.

For example, this picture was taken last year on December 19th, not even during the "busiest week of the year"! http://www.flickr.com/photos/malingering/6562524337/ Looks fun doesn't it!?!?
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Old 09-07-2012, 03:32 PM   #10
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Quote:
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...the week between Christmas and NY is pure evil....
That made me laugh, Goofy_Mom!





You know, that week between Christmas and New Year's is going to be a madhouse for so many reasons. There are all kinds of people free from family holiday obligations, work responsibilities, school schedules, etc., with time on their hands to head to DLR. There will be people armed with wads of money they received as gifts, ready to storm the parks and spend it on souvenirs (or even on Annual Passes!). There will be the lure of the new seasonal decorations in California Adventure (including Cars Land!), drawing people in out of curiosity.

Personally, I would avoid it (especially for a first-time visit) unless I just had to be there for New Year's Eve or something (but I did that once before and don't want to do it again).

Now, that said, I will mention (just in the interest of fairness) that I have read some other folks' posts here and there, over the last couple of years, which stated that "it wasn't that bad" in the post-Christmas week, and that they were able to successfully get everything done that they needed to do with proper planning and expectations. They also said that the crowds were not as horrendous as they had been told they'd be.

So, there are some people who will tell you that it's possible to go at that time and have a fulfilling, successful trip - but the majority will tell you to avoid it if you can.
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Old 09-07-2012, 04:55 PM   #11
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It will be extremely crowded, and if this is the first time you're taking your kids to experience Disney, I would really wait for a time that is less crowded. You will spend the majority of the day waiting for things, unfortunately.
I just want to say this is VERY true. We go every year at this time. We really enjoy it. BUT, we go several times a year.
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Old 09-07-2012, 04:58 PM   #12
ewd
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Thanks,everyone! I really appreciate your input and advice. I think we are going to scrap those plans and go another time. I think I need more time to plan anyway. I mean, honestly, my head is swimming. I might have to see if my aunt can come out of retirement as a travel agent to help me.
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Old 09-09-2012, 12:48 PM   #13
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We were in the SAME boat as you. We wanted to go during that week, figured it would be busy but had no idea until I came to these boards just how busy it is. With small children, I decided that I'd rather go another time and not deal with the insane crowds. So we're going next month instead. :-)
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